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Australian Open Counts 99 of Top 100-Ranked Men, Women in Field

The 2012 Australian Open tennis tournament is set to feature 99 of the top 100-ranked men and women, organizers of the year’s first Grand Slam said.

Men’s No. 13 Robin Soderling and 69th-ranked woman Alisa Kleybanova, who both have illnesses, are the only players missing from the direct acceptances into the main singles draws at Melbourne Park next month, Tennis Australia said today.

The 104 acceptances into the men’s draw include 2007 Australian Open runner-up Fernando Gonzalez and three-time semifinalist Tommy Haas, who used injury protected rankings to gain direct entry.

The 128-player men’s field will be completed by 16 qualifiers and eight wildcards, while the women’s field will add 12 qualifiers and eight wildcards to the 108 direct acceptances. The tournament starts Jan. 16.

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